Wednesday, February 16, 2011
My New Favorite
I recently decided to change my favorite super-hero from Spider-Man to Batman. I felt that it was time for the change because Batman is more dark and adult. I think Spider-Man is geared towards more of the teen to twenties crowd (so two years ago for me). Here are some things that weighed on my mind while making the change (and some that didn't).
Spider-Man has some great villains, including his biggest rival the Green Goblin. You also have Lizard, Electro, Kraven the Hunter, Doctor Octopus, Mysterio, Sandman, Rhino, Venom, and the Vulture. In my mind he has some of the best villains in the entire Marvel universe. But a lot of the bad guys seem to have been easily defeated. Electro does not strike fear into me and to be honest the Green Goblin just threw pumpkin bombs.
Batman of course has one of the best villains ever made in Joker. A personal favorite because he never took what he did too serious even if it was paralyzing Commissioner Gordon's daughter. Batman and most of his villains also have a deep rooted past. He has a long love interest in Catwoman and he was was friends with Harvey Dent before he turned into Two Face. You also have Doctor Freeze, Poison Ivy, The Riddler, The Penguin, Ra's Al Ghul, The Scarecrow, Killer Croc, and Clayface.
Spidey has the classic red and blue costume, with those two big white eyes. You know for sure it is Spider-Man when you see the costume. It is one of the best superhero costumes of all time. He also has those cool webs always around him, which look badass.
Batman is equally as classic and well known. You have the darker colors (best in sneaking around Gotham) but the classic bat emblem with the yellow back, to let the bad guys know that yep, this is batman and you are screwed. The cape and cowl are just as iconic.
Edge: Spider-Man (very very close)
Batman has his loyal butler Alfred to help him get through the day. He has had three Robin's assist him over the years. One is now Nightwing, one was killed by the Joker but has recently been resurrected as a villain, and the latest has sort of gone off on his own. Batman also have Commissioner Gordon and his daughter (and former Batgirl now turned helper Oracle) Barbra Gordon.
Spidey has his wife and love Mary Jane, who is hot! He also has (or until recently) had Aunt May as his rock. He has had his own tragedy in the loss of Gwen Stacy. His best friend Harry Osborne's dad Norman was also the Green Goblin.
The Spiderman movies were lead by director Sam Raimi, who made the movies fun and did not forget the roots of the comics. Tobey Mcguire was an excellent choice to play Peter Parker. The first movie sort of paved the way this comic book movie film revival. The first Spiderman movie does not hold up as well as, repeat viewings I have had made me ponder why I thought it so good in the first place. The second and far superior movie Spiderman 2, was much better. Spiderman gets a great villain in Doctor Octopus played by Alfred Molina (who gives the villain heart). They have some very memorable sequences and the action is stepped up over the first film, it is often on top lists of comic book movies and deserves to be. Spiderman 3 was problematic from the start. It seemed that Raimi was forced to use the Venom character without wanting too. Venom and Sandman were both villains and they also decided to give Harry Osborne his own costume and also Peter would have a new love interest. If it seems like a lot for one movie, it was. The movie was a commerical success but most fanboys have not forgotten the bitter taste from Spiderman 3, it could have been something special if they just used one villain instead of 3! They are currently filming a Spiderman reebot movie.
Batman has also had his share of movies. Batman and Batman Returns were both directed by Tim Burton and show the darker side of Batman. The Joker is played by Jack Nicholson and Batman was played by Michael Keaton of all people. The Burton films strayed towards the darker edgier side of Batman and both worked very well. I felt Batman Returns was underrated, and they handled having two villains very well (Catwoman and The Penguin). The third film Batman Forever showcased a new director (Joel Schumacher) and a new Batman (Val Kilmer). They sort of threw a lot at the audience, besides having two villains in The Riddler and Two Face they threw in Robin and giving Bruce Wayned a love interest (Nicole Kidman). The movie was pretty fun and enertaining at the time. It does not hold up as well and you can see how it would all go bad in the follow up film Batman and Robin. This time the movie went for all camp and not substance, what resulted was the worst Batman ever imagined. Doctor Freeze was played as a huge joke with one liner for everything by Arnold Schwarzenegger and Uma Thurman phoned her performance as Poison Ivy (although she did have some good sex appeal. George Clooney took of the role of Batman but with little dialogue to work with could do nothing. We are also introduced to Batgirl played by Alicia Silverstone, I think it would be one of the last big roles in her career and with good reason. Batman and Robin became the joke of what a comic book should never be.
With no where left to go the Batman movie was also rebooted. In 2005 Christopher Nolan was up the task and released Batman Begins, starting over with a real world take on Batman (Christian Bale). The film was a huge critical and commercial success. I thought the movie was very well done and I enjoy it but it also does not hold up as well as I was hoping, but still a quality piece of film making. Three years later Nolan thrilled audiences and this blogger with what I consider my favorite comic book movie of all time, The Dark Knight. Once again the Joker is the main villain, played by Heath Ledger (who we all know passed away before the movie was finished) who gives a masterful performance, in fact he would win an Oscar for it. It is hard to explain why I love this movie but I just do, its such a fresh take on characters that have been around for so long. I just love the Joker vs. Batman, Bale stepped it up on this one. You can really feel the tension and the movie is just draw droopingly beautiful and tragic.
Spiderman was bitten by a radioactive spider that granted him all the powers of a spider, he can stick to walls and is agile and has double the strength of a normal human. He also posses a spider sense of when trouble is going to happen that warns him (by far the coolest and most useful power). In the movies he has the ability to spin webs from his wrists but in the comics he created his own web shooters. Peter Parker is also a brilliant scientist although they rarely use this aspect of him anymore.
Batman is a genius and a masterful detective and in the top physical shape of a human. He is also handsome, but that is hard to tell with the mask on.
Spiderman created his own web shooters, which is pretty cool and shows off his nerdy scientific side. The webs are a pretty remarkable seeings as they can take Peter Parkers weight and let him swing around on them. They have also been used to lift very heavy objects as well as a useful tool for tying up bad guys.
Batman unlike Spiderman has a ton of money so he can afford to have the best gadgets. He has the Batmobile which is iconic and always badass. He also has the bat-plane and the utility belt which always has some useful tools to take down bad guys or be used for detective work. Since he has no actual powers, Batman must rely more on his gadgets to get by.
The list could go on and on but both heroes are great in their own ways, I am still giving the edge to my new hero Batman who holds a slight 3-2 advantage over Spidey.